San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland made the right call when he retired from the NFL. Never mind that he was one of the league’s top rookies last year. He knew it was time.
Underpinning his decision was Borland awareness of the great risk he was taking by continuing to play.
We know so much more about concussions than we did five years ago. We know that the tiny hits players can take in youth, high school and college football can add up. More importantly, we know that concussions affect athletes differently.
Borland, 24, told ESPN’s Outside the Lines: “I just honestly want to do what’s best for my health. From what I’ve researched and what I’ve experienced, I don’t think it’s worth the risk.”
His decision took a lot foresight, especially since he told the media outlet that he was as “sharp as I’ve ever been. For me, it’s wanting to be proactive. I’m concerned that if you wait ’til you have symptoms, it’s too late. … There are a lot of unknowns. I can’t claim that X will happen. I just want to live a long, healthy life, and I don’t want to have any neurological diseases or die younger than I would otherwise.”